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31 January 2018

NEDA panel gives Subic-Clark Railway project the green light

The Investment Coordination Committee-Cabinet Committee (ICC-CabCom) of the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) has approved the P57.6-billion Subic-Clark Railway Project connecting Subic Bay and the Clark Freeport Zones.

The rail line will provide freight connection between Subic Bay and the Clark to address the infrastructure needs for a freight railway system in Luzon.



It will link Subic Port with Clark International Airport and other major economic hubs in Central Luzon such as the planned New Clark City.

“This joint project of the Department of Transportation (DOTr) and the Bases Conversion Development Authority (BCDA) is one of the Duterte administration’s 75 flagship projects,” NEDA said.

The initial stages of the project— conceptualization and feasibility studies—started in October 2016. It is targeted to be completed in April 2021, according to the government’s Build, Build, Build website.

It was approved on Friday, January 26, NEDA said in a statement Monday. The project is now up for approval of the NEDA Board headed by President Rodrigo Duterte.

The ICC-CabCom also approved a higher cost for the Metro Manila Subway Project (MMSP)-Phase I at P356.96 billion or P1.375 billion more than the earlier estimate of P355.58 billion.

“The increase in the project cost of the MMSP was based on the appraisal of the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), which will finance the said project through an Office Development Assistance (ODA) loan package,” NEDA said.

The Mega Manila Subway is a 25-kilometer underground mass transportation system connecting the major business districts and government centers in the metropolis.

The government plans to spend over P8 trillion until 2022 on the golden age of infrastructure, largely funded by tax revenue.

This year alone, the Philippines plans to roll out 76 big-ticket projects cumulatively valued at $35.5 billion or P1.1 trillion. (Jon Viktor Cabuenas/VDS, GMA News)

http://www.gmanetwork.com/news/money/economy/641386/neda-panel-gives-subic-clark-railway-project-the-green-light/story/

The Philippines joins elite 20,000 TEU club

The Philippines celebrated another step towards the elite of shipbuilding with the delivery of its first 20,000 TEU class boxship.

South Korean shipbuilder Hanjin Heavy Industries and Construction-Philippines Inc. (HHIC-Phil) recently unveiled the CMA CGM Antoine de Saint Exupery, the first 20,600 TEU container vessel built in Subic Bay Freeport, the largest ship ever built in the Philippines and one of the biggest ships ever built in the world.



The CMA CGM Antoine de Saint Exupery is the first of three 20,600 teu boxships that HHIC-Phil is building for France’s leading liner group.

The ship has an overall length of 400 meters, a width of 59 meters, depth of 33 meters and gross tonnage tipping at 217,673 tons.

With a deck as big as three football fields combined, the CMA CGM Antoine de Saint Exupery is considered one of the biggest ships in the world today, HHIC-Phil officials said during the completion ceremony held at the firm’s Redondo Peninsula shipyard.

The mammoth container vessel, which was named after the French aristocrat and literary icon Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, was built over a period of one and a half years, from February 8, 2016, when the first steel cutting was made, to its launching in August 19 last year.

The CMA CGM Antoine de Saint Exupery is the first of three 20,600 TEU container ships that HHIC-Phil has committed to build for the French container transport and shipping firm CMA CGM (Compagnie Maritime d’Affrètement-Compagnie Générale Maritime, translated as Maritime Freighting Co.-General Maritime Co.).

Two other vessels of the same size and type are in advance stages of shipbuilding at Hanjin’s 326-hectare shipyard here.

The vessel completion ceremony here on Thursday was graced by noted government officials, led by former President and now Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, under whose administration the Hanjin shipyard was launched.

According to HHIC-Phil President Gwang Suk Chung, the delivery of the Antoine de Saint Exupery “represents a breakthrough in global shipbuilding,” as the Korean company’s cutting-edge technology complemented by the skills of Filipino workers successfully launched vessels of higher tonnage and value.

Chung also recalled that “the intensive support of the Philippine government” gave the Korean a robust head start in the country’s shipbuilding industry.

HHIC-Phil officials said that the firm still has a number of high-value commercial vessels on order with their launchings and deliveries spread across 2018 and 2019. These include liquefied petroleum gas carriers and crude-oil carriers, among others. In January last year, the HHIC-Phil marked another milestone with the delivery of Gener8 Hector, the first “very large crude carrier” ever constructed in the Philippines. The vessel was delivered to the United States-based crude-oil shipping company Gener8 Maritime.

In her speech, Arroyo cited the $2.3-billion investment by HHIC-Phil in the Subic Bay Freeport. She also noted that the Korean firm had also built a massive training facility for local workers.

Meanwhile, SBMA Chairman Wilma T. Eisma thanked HHIC-Phil on behalf of President Duterte, pointing out that the Hanjin shipyard had played a vital role in national economic growth.

“With the 113 ships that Hanjin has delivered since it began operations in 2007, Hanjin’s presence in the Subic Bay Freeport has made the Philippines the fourth-biggest shipbuilding nation in the world,” she said.

Eisma also urged the Korean firm to look after its Filipino workers, who are an integral part of the success of the company. “We ask you to protect our people, to look after our facilities, because Subic is our home,” she added.

Last year HHIC-Phil delivered its first VLCC. It also has LPG vessels on its orderbooks. In terms of area size, HHIC-Phil is among the very largest shipyards in the world. Its parent, Hanjin Heavy in Busan, South Korea, took the decision to expand overseas 12 years ago as its own facilities were too cramped at a time where ship sizes were growing rapidly.

Other notable shipbuilders in the Philippines are Tsuneishi and Keppel cementing the Philippines' position as the world’s fourth largest shipbuilding nation.

https://businessmirror.com.ph/hanjin-delivers-first-subic-made-20600-teu-class-container-ship/

http://splash247.com/philippines-joins-elite-20000-teu-club/


30 January 2018

SBMA bullish on 2018 investments

The Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) is optimistic that renewed investor confidence in the Subic Bay Freeport would sustain an upbeat mood here in what has been hailed last year as the fastest growing free trade zone in Asia.

According to SBMA Chairman and Administrator Wilma T. Eisma, the Subic agency expects more investment projects in 2018 to top the P2.54 billion in total committed investments generated here in 2017.



“We recorded a total of 176 new investment proposals and 63 expansion projects proposed by existing investor-companies last year, but we anticipate more investments this year because we’re opening new areas for development and, at the same time, putting more value into existing facilities so that we could attract more takers,” Eisma said.

According to figures from the SBMA Business and Investment Group (SBMA-BIG), the Subic agency processed 56 new investment projects in the first quarter of 2017, 27 in the second quarter, 49 in the third, and 44 in the last quarter to generate a total of P1,448,358,341 in committed investments last year.

The 2017 investment projects also yielded a projected employment total of 2,667.

On the other hand, the 63 expansion projects proposed last year by existing firms here brought a total of P1,088,313,616 in new investments and a total of 821 additional jobs.

With these, the SBMA-BIG processed last year a total of 1,221 certificates of registration (CRs) and certificates of registration and tax exemption (CRTEs), compared to its target of 806 certificates. The certificates allowed holders to operate as business entities inside the Subic Bay Freeport Zone.

Eisma also pointed out that the SBMA Business and Investment Group as of November 2017 reported actual revenue generated at P1.23 billion, which was P353 million more than the target of P913 million for last year.

“Compared to the actual revenue of P1.15 billion in 2016, the P1.23 billion that SBMA-BIG earned last year was higher by P83.2 million, or 7.23 percent,” Eisma added.

The SBMA official also said that the agency should have recorded much bigger investment commitments and projected employment had the Dynamic Konstruk project at the Redondo Peninsula pushed through.

“That alone would have brought in P40 billion in investments and 50,000 new jobs, but we revoked the lease and development agreement after the project proponent failed to meet its obligations,” Eisma added.

She said, however, that the Subic agency will open up the Redondo Peninsula for development upon the completion of a new master plan for the area. The SBMA has identified some 3,000 hectares at Redondo, which would be ideal for projects in port, fuel depot, wind and solar energy generation, and industrial estate operations.

“We’re also seeking to invest in new road networks to increase the value of idle land and facilities within the Freeport and to move away from the ‘as-is-where-is’ policy that leaves investors to develop the area they were leasing,” Eisma revealed.

She added that the SBMA is also looking into the proposed measure to extend the validity of business registration from one to three years to promote customer satisfaction, improve business operations in the Subic Freeport, and attract more investments.

The Subic Bay Freeport is now home to more than 1,500 investor-companies with more than $11 billion in total cumulative investments and employing a total workforce of more than 124,000 employees. (HEE/MPD-SBMA)

PHOTO:

SBMA Chairman and Administrator Wilma T. Eisma discusses business prospects in the Subic Bay Freeport with officials of the Subic Bay Freeport Chamber of Commerce on Wednesday.

24 January 2018

LOOK: Sports officials check out Subic as SEA Games venue

[1] SBMA Chairperson and Administrator Wilma T. Eisma (center) welcomes Ramon Suzara, head of the Southeast Asian Games 2019 master-planning team, and his team members during an ocular inspection of sports facilities and venues in the Subic Bay Freeport Zone on Jan. 16.


At least 10 different sport events of the SEA Games will be held in the Subic Bay Freeport Zone next year.



[2] SBMA Chairperson and Administrator Wilma T. Eisma, along with SDA Ramon O. Agregado (left), listens to an assessment by Ramon Suzara, head of the Southeast Asian Games 2019 master-planning team, of proposed plans for the hosting of at least 10 different sport events of the SEA Games in the Subic Bay Freeport Zone next year. Suzara’s team visited Subic on Jan. 16 to inspect sports facilities and probable venues for the 2019 SEA Games.

(MPD-SBMA)

SBMA seeks regular passport processing in Subic Freeport

The Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) is pursuing a regular schedule for the processing of passports in this free port in order to serve residents of the Subic Bay area and nearby communities.

SBMA Chairperson and Administrator Wilma T. Eisma said she has requested the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) to conduct passport processing here at least twice a year and, later on, to establish full consular services at the Subic Bay Freeport.

“The plan is to start with a passport issuance office, which will evolve into a consular affairs office,” Eisma said in a media briefing on Monday.



The SBMA official made this announcement after the successful conduct of a mobile passport processing activity at the Ayala Harbor Point Mall here on January 13, where some 700 passport applications were processed by visiting DFA personnel.

The project was spearheaded by the DFA and SBMA, with the DFA contingent led by Office of the Consular Affairs Regional Center Chief Bayani Sibug and the SBMA technical working group headed by SBMA Office Services Department chief Gerardo Hermoso, Jr.

“We received an overwhelming number of requests from residents for another passport processing project, as a lot of residents were disappointed to find out that no walk-in applicants were entertained," Eisma said. “So we would try to make this a regular project for the benefit of local residents.”

Hermoso said the passport processing project was, at first, intended for SBMA employees only, as part of the agency’s 25th founding anniversary program. The applications processed on January 13 were actually filed for pre-qualification last October.

However, the project was later on extended to include immediate family members of SBMA employees to fill the 750 slots given by the DFA, until it was opened to walk-in applicants during the final acceptance of requirements last year.



The applications and requirements accepted by the SBMA TWG were sent to the DFA office in Manila for verification to hasten processing time when they come here for the personal appearance of applicants and the data-capturing phase of the processing, Hermoso explained.

Eisma, however, assured Subic Bay residents that the SBMA is now coordinating with the DFA for the next application processing project.

"Hopefully, we will have another one by the fourth quarter and that will be a regular event,” she said.

“This will be among our corporate social responsibility projects to help residents of neighboring towns, as well as assist the DFA in their mission to promote and protect Philippine interests in the global community,” Eisma further said.

In August last year, President Rodrigo Duterte signed Republic Act 10928, which extended the validity of Philippine passports, by amending the Philippine Passport Act of 1996.

Chairman Eisma said the Subic agency will announce the schedule of the next mobile passport processing project via its radio station Subic Bay radio 89.5-FM, as well as social media and other platforms for public announcement. (RFD/MPD-SBMA)

PHOTOS:

[1] Applicants line up during the DFA-SBMA passport application processing project on January 13 at the Ayala Harbor Point Mall in the Subic Bay Freeport.

[2] SBMA Chairman and Administrator Wilma T. Eisma (right) checks on the progress of the passport processing project with SBMA-TWG team leader Vivian Perdigon and Regional Consular Affairs Center Chief Bayani Sibug at the Ayala Harbor Point Mall in the Subic Bay Freeport on January 13. 

LOOK: Encounter with Subic sealife

Community elders from Barangay Sta. Fe, a farming village near Mount Pinatubo in San Marcelino, Zambales, gawk at a sea lion during a recent tour at the Ocean Adventure Aquarium at the Subic Bay Freeport.



The charity tour, which visited other theme parks in the Freeport area, was facilitated by #BisikletaPilipinas, a Zambales-based bloggers consortium that promotes tourism in the province. (AMD/MPD-SBMA)

SBMA, IP group ink accord for Ayta conservation area

The Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) has formally signed an agreement with a non-government organization for the implementation of a conservation program to benefit the Magbukun Ayta tribesmen living within the Subic Bay Freeport Zone.

SBMA Chairman and Administrator Wilma T. Eisma signed the accord with Betty Fielder, president of the Subic Indigenous Peoples Assistance Group (SIPAG), on Wednesday at the SBMA office.



SIPAG had launched its Indigenous Communities Conservation Area (ICCA) project last December under the auspices of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) to help protect and preserve the indigenous Ayta environment and culture here.

The project will be implemented with the support of the local government unit of Morong, Bataan, and the Philippine Association for Intercultural Development (PAFID).

The project places the Magbukun Ayta tribe at the forefront of conservation efforts since they live in the conservation site, which forms a part of the Subic Bay Freeport Zone

Eisma said the SBMA will give its all-out support to the project because it dovetails with the agency’s conservation and environment protection program.

“We have pledged our all-out support to this project because it strengthens our fundamental advocacy to protect the natural environment of the Subic Freeport,” Eisma explained.

“Of course, part of the effort goes to the conservation of the indigenous Ayta culture and we also support that,” she added.

Under the agreement, the SBMA allowed SIPAG to use a building at the Naval Magazine area in the Freeport for the establishment of the Ayta Cultural Skills Development and Livelihood Training Center.

Under the ICCA program, residents living within or nearby the conservation area are tasked to serve as protectors of the environment, while the local government unit takes the lead in implementing conservation and protection activities.

According to the UNDP, ICCAs are spaces de facto governed by indigenous peoples or local communities with evidently positive outcomes for the conservation of biological and cultural diversity.

The UNDP also said that ICCAs can be classified as sacred areas or ritual grounds for the indigenous communities residing near it and may include forests, mountains, shorelines, wetlands, fishing areas, and other bodies of water.

Project officials said that with the ICCA program, the continuation, revival or modification of traditional practices or even new initiatives may succeed in protecting and restoring natural resources and cultural values in the face of new threats or opportunities.

Eisma said the SBMA has been successful in implementing a similar program with the Ambala Ayta tribe at the Pastolan village in the town of Hermosa, which also forms part of the Subic Bay Freeport Zone.

The SBMA has recently been recognized for its Ambala development program by the London-based International Finance Magazine (IFM) for having the best social responsibility initiative, Eisma also said.

Before this, the SBMA also initiated the so-called social-fencing concept at the Freeport to make residents of upland areas in the zone be part of the overall strategy to preserve Subic’s natural environment. (HEE/MPD-SBMA)

PHOTO

Members of the Magbukun Ayta tribe welcome the signing of an agreement by SBMA Chairman and Administrator Wilma T. Eisma (left) and SIPAG President Betty Fielder to implement a conservation program at the tribe’s territory within the Subic Bay Freeport Zone. (SBMA)

15 January 2018

Cycling: SEA Games vets rule ITT

Mark Galedo, Marella Salamat and Jay Lampawog shone brightest among the country’s top guns of cycling by ruling the individual time trial (ITT) races of the Philippine National Cycling Championships for Road inside the Subic Bay Freeport.

Galedo clocked 43 minutes and 6.876 seconds to win the gold medal in the men’s ITT raced over a 31-km course, snatching in the process the coveted national champion’s jersey from the PhilCycling.



The former SEA Games gold medalist also banked the top purse of P50,000 from PRU Life UK, which bankrolled the PRUride ph 2018.

Galedo’s fellow national team members George Oconer and Rustom Lim completed the podium, finishing the race-against-the-clock race 19 and 30 seconds behind.

“I will proudly wear this jersey,” said Galedo, who, like all the other 25 riders who raced the ITT, had to pedal through Subic’s strong winds that rushed from almost all directions along the entire route.

Pru Life UK Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer Allan Tumbaga, world top-ranked cyclist Filipino-American Coryn Rivera, Prudential PLC Head of Sponsorship Diane Pender and PhilCycling Secretary General Atty. Billy Sumagui awarded the prizes to the winners.

Salamat, the SEA Games ITT queen, was hardly challenged in her pet event and won the 21-km women’s race in 34:49.163. She also grabbed the P50,000 prize.

Taiwan’s Chng Ting Ting settled for the silver medal while Jermyn Prado, winner of the women’s road race last Friday, was third.

Lampawog, on the other hand, took the under-23 title, crossing the finish of the event also raced on the men’s course in 45:02.038. (Manila Bulletin)

Morales, Prado top elite races

Jan Paul Morales won a sprint finish against Ronald Oranza and Jermyn Prado won pulling away to rule the Philippine National Cycling Championships for Road over a technical and treacherous route Friday in Subic and Bataan.

A total of 96 riders answered the gun for the men’s elite race of the PhilCycling but it was Morales, a many-time national team member who emerged as one of the biggest winners of the event that awarded the coveted national champions’ jerseys to the victors.

“I really went for the win but I had to work hard for this one,” said Morales moments after his victory that earned him not only P50,000 in cash from organizer Pru Life UK but also an all-expense paid trip to the Prudential Ride London in July.

Morales clocked three hours, 42 minutes and 55 seconds – same time as Oranza –over the 137-km course that included a treacherous climb to the Dambana ng Mga Bayani at Mt. Samat in Mariveles, Bataan.

Felipe Marcelo and Jonel Carcueva figured in a race incident close to the Subic Bay Exhibition and Convention Center finish and shared third place in one of the races that highlight the PRUride PH 2018.

Oranza brought home P25,000 while Marcelo and Carcueva shared the third and fourth place prizes of P15,000 and P12,500, respectively.

Also earning tickets to London and R50,000 each were Prado and Men Under 23 winner Ismael Gorospe. (Tempo)

PHOTO:

SBMA Deputy Administrator for Regulatory Group Atty. Ruel John Kabigting (left), signals the send off for cyclists participating in the Subic-leg of PRUride Ph 2018, said to be one of the biggest cycling events in the country at the Subic Bay Exhibition and Convention ground Friday. (AMD/MPD-SBMA)


13 January 2018

SBMA posts P1.2-billion port revenue in 2017

The Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) has recorded P1.2 billion in seaport revenue last year, surpassing its 2016 record by three percent, with an increase of 12 percent in the port’s containerized cargo volume.

SBMA Chairman and Administrator Wilma T. Eisma said that figures from the SBMA Seaport Department indicated a total income of P1,173,720,042 in January to December 2017 last year, compared to the P1.137 billion revenue collection in 2016.



“The continuing effort of the Seaport Department to upgrade its process flow minimized transaction time and attracted more and more importers and exporters to use the Port of Subic,” Eisma noted.

She pointed out that the volume of containerized cargo grew to 139,980 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) in 2017 from just 124,707 TEUs in 2016. This increase in containerized cargo had offset a six-percent decrease last year in the volume of non-containerized cargo, which fell to only 6,646,322 metric tons as against 7,071,444 metric tons in 2016.

Accordingly, the SBMA Seaport Department processed 66,172 TEUs of imported containerized products in 2017, which was nine percent higher than the 60,593 TEUs processed in 2016. Meanwhile, the department processed last year 25,007 TEUs of exported containerized products, which was six percent higher than the 23,527 TEUs in 2016.

The increase in import-export volume that passed through the Port of Subic likewise resulted in a significant increase of containerized cargoes transshipped in the Freeport: 1,462 TEUs in January to December 2017 against 368 TEUs in 2016, or an increase of 297 percent.

Jerome Martinez, head of the SBMA Seaport Department, said much of the increase in revenue was due to the growth in imported products like vehicle parts by Foton Motor Phils., Inc.; paper materials by Trust International Paper Corp.; and rubber by Yokohama Tire Phils. Inc., which were all sourced from Japan.

Likewise, the growth in export revenue was attributed to increased export of tires by Yokohama Tires Phils. to Japan; Juken Sangyo Phils. for veneer lumber also to Japan; and HLD Clark Steel Pipe Co. for steel pipes to the United States.

Martinez also said that another factor in seaport revenue growth was the implementation of Republic Act 10668, also known as the Foreign Ships Co-Loading Act, which allowed arriving or departing ships to carry a foreign cargo to its Philippine port of final destination, after being cleared at its port of entry or exit.

“This law tends to decrease, in some instances, vessel activities going to the Port of Subic, particularly in the importation and exportation of goods,” Martinez said. “However, transshipment activities increase,” he added.

The devaluation of peso against the US dollar and the unstable global price of crude oil in the world market which caused a decline of the importation of petroleum products, also buoyed Subic seaport income, said Martinez.

SBMA Chairman Eisma also expressed optimism for the Port of Subic this 2018, pointing out that one of the world’s largest cruise ships will be arriving here in June for a 12-hour tour of the Subic Bay area.

Eisma said this was confirmed after Dr. Zinan Liu and other officials of Royal Caribbean International (RCI) spent a two-day assessment of the Subic Bay area last December for the purpose of including Subic in the itinerary of RCI’s Asian cruise program.

Subic reportedly checked out as a cruise ship destination after Liu noted that it has attractions for people interested in culture, history and religion, aside from the theme parks, beach resorts, hotels and other modern amenities found in the area.

Eisma estimated that should each cruise ship passenger spend US$100 during their stay in Subic, local businesses would gain millions in income during the visit. (RAV/MPD-SBMA)

PHOTO:

Containerized cargo boxes line up the New Container Terminal in the Subic Bay Freeport (AMD/MPD-SBMA)

09 January 2018

PRUride PH 2018 to fire off next week in Subic Bay

Southeast Asian Games gold medalists Mark John Lexer Galedo and Marella Vania Salamat will head the men and women elite cast seeing action in the Pru Life UK’s PRUride PH 2018 beginning next weekend starting on January 11 in Subic and Bataan and on January 21 at McKinley West in Taguig City.

Free registration – through the official website http://PRUride.PH! – awaits Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) license holders in the men and women elite, men and women under-23 and men and women junior categories for the PRUride PH Professional Road Race.



Besides the honor of wearing the national champion’s jersey to be awarded by the sanctioning Integrated Cycling Federation of the Philippines (PhilCycling), the national federation for the sport, a total cash prize of more than P1 million will go to the top finishers in all categories — plus the chance to ride in the Prudential RideLondon 2018 in July, all expenses paid.

The champions of the men and women elite categories for both PRUride Professional Road Race and PRUride Criterium will receive P50,000 each, while the men under-23 category winners for all races will bring home P20,000 each. The prizes in the men elite races are scaled down to the 20th place with the second and third placers getting P25,000 and P15,000, respectively.

The 136-kilometer road race for men and 120-km for women elite and men juniors is set simultaneously on January 12 on a route that will start and finish at the Subic Bay Exposition and Convention Center (SBECC). The route includes an arduous climb atop Mount Samat and a punishing ride over the hills of Morong in Bataan.

The individual time trial (ITT) for all categories, meanwhile, will be staged the next day on January 13 over a 30-km (for professionals) or a 15-km course (for amateurs) also on an out-and-back course at SBECC.PRUride PH 2018 also the 100- and 50-kilometer Gran Fondo events on January 14 in Subic. (Manila Bulletin)

https://sports.mb.com.ph/2018/01/06/pruride-ph-2018-to-fire-off-next-week/

SBMA bans 3 brokers in P40-M liquor smuggling try

The Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) has blacklisted three customs brokers for involvement in the attempted smuggling here recently of expensive liquor worth around P40 million.

SBMA Chairman and Administrator Wilma T. Eisma said this was the initial action of the agency in connection with the smuggling attempt that was foiled by the SBMA Law Enforcement Department (SBMA-LED) just before Christmas.


The SBMA Seaport Department has identified the blacklisted brokers as Ellen Baylon, an authorized representative of the brokerage firm Alava Alliance, Inc.; John Louie Pabico, a processor of Phil-Hohan International Corp.; and Cherry Springael, a freelance processor and authorized representative of Alava Alliance.

“These persons have been banned from doing business with the SBMA Seaport, and the companies they represented have been placed on indefinite suspension pending the final results of investigation by the Bureau of Customs (BOC),” Eisma added.

She added that the BOC, which received custody of the smuggled items from the SBMA, will also file appropriate criminal charges against the brokers for violation of the Customs and Tariff Act, as well as Republic Act 7227, or the Bases Conversion and Development Act.

“Let this serve as a warning that Subic authorities won’t tolerate illegal activities in the Freeport, and we will apply the full measure of the law in cases like this,” Eisma added.

The SBMA said earlier that its law enforcement operatives seized a total of 1,321 boxes of liquor from a closed van that was about to leave the Freeport on Dec. 24, and from a 40-footer container van parked at the Subic Seaport Terminal on Dec. 28.

The seized contraband included 54 bottles of Remy Martin Louis XIII, which sells as much as P170,000 per bottle, and eight boxes of Remy Martin Centaure De Diamant, which fetches P60,000 per bottle.

The SBMA police began the operation on Christmas Eve after a tipster informed them that a closed van and a Nissan Patrol SUV would attempt to smuggle contraband from the Freeport.

Subsequently, SBMA-LED operatives posted along the Argonaut Highway leading to Subic’s sea ports monitored the vehicles and tailed them to the 14th Street Gate where they were stopped by sentries.

The Fuso van, bearing File No. 036404 of BCR Trucking, was found to contain 275 boxes of Remy Martin Cognac Champagne, 448 boxes of Martini, 66 boxes of Remy Martin XO, 17 boxes of Remy Martin Champagne, 8 boxes of Remy Martin Louis XIII, 8 boxes of Remy Martin Centaure De Diamant, 7 boxes of Remy Martin Club, and 7 boxes of Remy Martin.

The driver, identified as 41-year old Julio Flores, as well as the helper, 46-year old Marvin Arcega, failed to present necessary documents when accosted by the police, the SBMA-LED said in a report.

Under investigation, Flores reported that he picked up the merchandise from the Subic Seaport Terminal Inc. (SSTI) at the Boton Pier here on instruction of a certain “Ed” who rented his truck for the pickup.

Flores added that a certain “Cherry” assured him that the goods were ready for exit at Subic’s Tipo gate even without any document because two other trucks with similar load were able to exit so.

With this information, SBMA operatives conducted a follow-up operation on Thursday that led them to a white Isuzu Giga cab with the markings “Sinfa Logistics Inc.” that was parked at the SSTI’s Boton Pier facility. The 40-footer container yielded 333 boxes of Remy Martin, 196 boxes of Remy Martin XO, 1 box of Remy Martin Club, 1 box of Martini, 2 boxes of Remy Martin, and 10 boxes of Remy Martin Louis XIII.

Eisma said the SBMA police conducted an inventory of the smuggled items in the presence of representatives from the Bureau of Customs, the SBMA Seaport Department and members of the media before turning over the confiscated items and the vehicles containing them to the Bureau of Customs in the Port of Subic. (HEE/MPD-SBMA)


03 January 2018

SBMA police seize P40 million smuggled liquor

Police operatives from the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) foiled an attempt to smuggle more than P40-million worth of liquor here and seized the contraband even before they could be spirited out of the Subic Bay Freeport on Christmas Eve.

The SBMA Law Enforcement Department seized a total of 1,321 boxes of expensive liquor from a closed van that was about to leave the Freeport on Dec. 24, and from a 40-footer container van parked at the Subic Seaport Terminal.

SBMA Chairman and Administrator Wilma T. Eisma lauded the alertness and efficacy of the SBMA law enforcers in foiling the smuggling attempt.

“Some unscrupulous parties would really take advantage of the Christmas season to try to pull away illegal activities in the Freeport, but this only proves that the SBMA Law Enforcement Department is ready at all times to do their duty,” Eisma said after receiving the report.

“This is a job well done for the SBMA and another huge failure for those who try to use Subic for their smuggling operation,” Eisma added.

According to a report by Maj. Vicente Tolentino, head of the SBMA Law Enforcement Department, the seized contraband included 54 bottles of Remy Martin Louis XIII, which sells as much as P170,000 per bottle, and eight boxes of Remy Martin Centaure De Diamant, which fetches P60,000 per bottle.

Tolentino said the SBMA police began the operation on Christmas Eve after a tipster informed them that a closed van and a Nissan Patrol SUV would attempt to smuggle contraband from the Freeport.

He said that operatives posted along the Argonaut Highway monitored the vehicles and tailed them to the 14th Street Gate where they were stopped by sentries.

The Fuso van, bearing File No. 036404 of BCR Trucking, was driven by 41-year old Julio Flores, along with helper Marvin Arcega, 46 years old. The two failed to present necessary documents when accosted by the police, Tolentino said.

The van contained 275 boxes of Remy Martin Cognac Champagne, 448 boxes of Martini, 66 boxes of Remy Martin XO, 17 boxes of Remy Martin Champagne, 8 boxes of Remy Martin Louis XIII, 8 boxes of Remy Martin Centaure De Diamant, 7 boxes of Remy Martin Club, and 7 boxes of Remy Martin.

A follow-up operation on Thursday led operatives to a white Isuzu Giga cab with the markings “Sinfa Logistics Inc.”, which was parked at the Subic Seaport Terminal in the Boton Wharf.

The 40-footer container van on its trailer contained the rest of the contraband: 333 boxes of Remy Martin, 196 boxes of Remy Martin XO, 1 box of Remy Martin Club, 1 box of Martini, 2 boxes of Remy Martin, and 10 boxes of Remy Martin Louis XIII.

Tolentino said the SBMA police conducted an inventory of the smuggled items last Thursday and Friday in the presence of representatives from the Bureau of Customs, the SBMA Seaport Department and members of the media.

On Friday, Tolentino formally turned over the items and the vehicles containing them to Ciriaco Ugay, OIC-Collector of the Bureau of Customs in the Port of Subic. (JEE/MPD-SBMA)

PHOTO:

SBMA police operatives and workers unload boxes of smuggled liquor for inventory at the Law Enforcement Department office on Friday. (JRR/MPD-SBMA)